Iowa parents speak out against school changes

DES MOINES (AP) — Students at Des Moines middle schools no longer have the option to take advanced English and science classes.

The Des Moines Register reports Tuesday that some parents are concerned that top performers won’t be challenged.

Students instead will have the option to complete honors-level assignments in all subjects within general education classrooms. Accelerated math classes will remain and some students will have access to advanced courses at a magnet school. The change coincides with the implementation of a new grading system.

Parent Natasha Newcomb tells the paper that people are concerned teachers will focus more on struggling students than those who are ahead. She started an online petition urging the district to return advanced classes to the middle schools.